ACCA, AmCham inks MoU for accountancy capacity building in Guyana

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Head of ACCA Caribbean, Shelly Ann Mohammed and President of AmCham Guyana, Zulfikar Ally during the signing of the MoU

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) has inked a two-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the American Chamber of Commerce of Guyana (AmCham), providing capacity building and training for interested accountants across the private sector.

At a simple ceremony at the Marriott Hotel on Monday, officials of both organisations finalised the agreement and shared some of the prospects that are expected in time for the forthcoming oil industry.

Head of ACCA Caribbean, Shelly Ann Mohammed explained that the agreement is aimed at developing the skills of accountants in Guyana that will take them through the changing economic sector.

“It is our hope that through this formalized partnership, we will be able to work together in the coming years to further develop the accounting profession in Guyana as well as to collaborate on training and initiatives to equip local finance professionals with skills to thrive in a rapidly changing professional environment,” stated Mohammed.

ACCA is branded for its contributions in developing this profession over the past 30 years in several countries around the world.

The ACCA Head highlighted some of the goals for the company in Guyana by stating,“Our core values are aligned to the needs of the employers in all sectors and we show that through our range of qualifications. We prepare accountants for business. ACCA is committed to helping growth in Guyana by partnering with all stakeholders to think ahead to connect markets and communities and to use our global range to support the profession to flourish and grow.”

One the other hand, President of AmCham Guyana, Zulfikar Ally gave a highlight of some of the areas that will be targeted during these training courses and emphasised that this programme is open to all stakeholders.

“We’re focusing on training and development of accountants within the business community. It would not only be just for AmCham members, but any business who are interested in learning from the collaboration we have with ACCA. We will focus on areas of anti-money laundering, new accounting practices, leadership, global recognition, ethics in accounting and governance.”

Chairman of Demerara Bank Limited, Dr Yesu Persaud spoke on the accounting profession in Guyana, stating that it can achieve close to “miracles” as he would have seen during his decades of experience.

“Accounting is a profession that if you use it correctly and try to learn from other professions, you could do almost miracles and I have done that in quite a number of areas. Sometimes you got to be tough. You got to take the upper hand,” said the Chairman.

During this engagement, many would have spoken on the sidelines about the oil prospects in Guyana and developing a strong local content framework for the country’s protection. Mohammed pointed out that building a strong accounting background is essential and will reduce the country’s dependence on foreign accountants.

“I think it will be very important to build the finance department of those oil and gas company because they’re going to need strong auditing, strong accounting background and some might be global companies so the standards are going to be in align with global recognition… Part of building local content is important not just to utilise the foreign accountants but to make sure we build capacity in Guyana,” she said.

She insisted that they are looking at feedbacks from the training to identify how impactful the sessions will be on preparations for the oil sector.

“Our companies in Guyana are really going to need this capacity building especially because of the oil and gas development that is happening. Over the next few days, we hope that we can see the impact of the training and capacity building that we do.”

The AmCham added that Guyana can also learn from ACCA Caribbean since Trinidad and Tobago had vast experience in both oil and natural gas.

“It is very significant because in Guyana, we don’t have that capacity as yet. Oil and gas is very new to us. We’re hoping to collaborate with them and benefit from them, giving the experience that they have already to help our members and the private sector.”

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